For over fifteen years, the Institute for Priests and Presbyterates at Saint Meinrad has been working with international priests to help equip and support them for ministry in the United States through workshops for language and accent, ministry, and culture.

Insight, information, and experience with international priests and receiving dioceses provide a basis for workshop curricula to help foster more effective and fulfilling ministry in the parish and diocese.

Our workshops aim to introduce international priests to the skills needed to

  • Produce spoken English in a way that is easy for Americans to follow.
  • Proclaim the Gospel and other liturgical texts in a listener-friendly manner for North American audiences.
  • Learn more about American cultural values and assumptions, and those of their parishoners.
  • Develop strategies for effective interpersonal communication in the United States.

WOrld priest workshop
at saint meinrad

Participants progress systematically through the essential elements of producing the target accent, including individual sounds, words, sentences, and elements of prosody (rhythm, stress, intonation, and phrasing). Participants then apply these principles to their preaching and proclamation of liturgical texts.

The curriculum for the World Priest Workshop is reviewed and revised regularly. Major topics include:

Introduction to U.S. Speech Patterns. A hands-on workshop in pronunciation through examination of vowels and consonants that are often difficult to produce for non-native English speakers. The workshop will address North American English-speaking rhythm, word stress, intonation, and pace for both words and thought groups.

Cultural Patterns provides an overview of cultural patterns and ethical values that shape cultures around the world. By familiarizing themselves with these cultural patterns, participants will not only identify their own personal styles, but also recognize others’ values that will enable participants to better communicate with their congregations.

Cross Cultural Competence and Communication provides an overview of intercultural competence. This interactive session is designed to allow participants to be able to identify their own intercultural competence and develop an actionable plan to increase their intercultural competencies. This session is intended to help participants understand North American styles of communication including verbal and non-verbal behavior.

Caring for Souls (including your own) in a Different Culture. The care of souls is one of the priest’s primary responsibilities, and it is always influenced by the culture in which he finds himself. To effectively care for others’ souls, however, a priest also must care for his own. What might an international priest do for his own spiritual self-care and well-being (prayers, practices, etc.) that will support his ministry in a new/different culture?

Pastoral Ministry in the United States. Facilitated discussion on common differences experienced in pastoral practices between their home countries and with those found in the United States. Topics include ministering as a member of a pastoral team, ministry with youth and young adults, marriage preparation and marriage nullity cases, and working within a U.S. presbyterate, among others.

Liturgical Practicum. The precise format of this session is adapted to each group’s needs and concerns, particularly how international priests might adapt their established presiding styles to American culture. American funeral practices (including cremation) and funerals for those who die by suicide are specifically addressed.

View a sample schedule

Workshop Dates

  • October 14-18, 2024


$1000 per person, all-inclusive.

Additional overnight accommodation and meals (beyond program dates) are subject to availability and are billed in addition to the basic program fee.

Airport shuttle service from the Louisville airport is available for an additional fee.

Click for Downloadable Registration Form


  • Accommodations (private room and bath) and workshop sessions are situated in St. Bede Hall. Meals are taken with the seminarians in Newman Hall.

  • The dress code for the workshop is business casual - clerics and religious habits are optional.